Mortgage Activity Increases Despite Affordability Issues

    Per the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) survey through the week ending May 5th, total mortgage activity increased 6.3% from the previous week and the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) rate fell two basis points to 6.48%. The FRM rate has risen 18 basis points over the past month.

    The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, rose by 6.3% on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis from one week earlier. Purchasing activity increased 4.8%, while refinancing activity increased 10.0% week-over-week.

    Purchasing activity has remained muted this spring due to affordability issues in the market. The seasonally adjusted purchase index was 32.0% lower than one year ago. Refinancing activity has seen a slight increase over the past month as interest rates have stabilized around 6.5%; the seasonally adjusted refinancing index is down 44.5% from one year ago.

    The refinance share of mortgage activity rose from 27.2% to 28.0% over the week, while the adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 6.8% from 7.3%. The average loan size for purchases was $440,700 in the first week of May, up slightly from $435,600 over the month of April. The average loan size for a FRM rose to $363,400 in the first week up May; this amount as risen for seven consecutive months. The average loan size for refinancing grew by 5.5% from $263,300 over the month of April to $277,900 in the first week of May.


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